Charlie Chan in The Chinese Cat

February 5, 2011

This 1944 film from Monogram Pictures starred Sidney Toler and Benson Fong in this 65 minute mystery involving murder in a locked room of a businessman playing chess against himself. The murder goes unsolved until his daughter hires Chan to solve the mystery.  A secret compartment in a Chinese cat uncovers a famous diamond, the reason for the murder and two others, and eventually the solving of the case. Mantan Moreland as Birmingham Brown provides the humor which is a bit overdone with a funhouse scene at the end of the picture. Directed by Phil Rosen, who did (5) Charlie Chan films for Monogram pictures, with screenplay by George Callahan, who also worked on several pictures in the series, it has its moments and is worth an hour of your time but I found it to be overall disappointing and one of the weaker entries in the series.  While I liked the idea of the hidden compartments in the figures I wish it had been expanded upon a little further. I’ve included the audio clip of the main title.

 

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